William Ashley Post script
State and local newspapers celebrate the first anniversary of the historic transplant.


William Ashley and his family lived in Mt. Pleasant for about a year after the surgery so he would be near his doctors. For twelve months following the transplant, doctors maintained Mr. Ashley on a schedule of immunosuppressant drugs. Eventually, the family returned to Iva where Mr. Ashley worked for his father in the family grocery store. He fathered another child and by all accounts led a productive life. However, in early 1973, Mr. Ashley’s transplanted kidney began to fail and he was admitted to MUSC for dialysis. An infection in his foot led to gangrene which led to the amputation of first his lower then his upper leg. The amputation led to a blood clot which was fatal. William Roy “Billy” Ashley died at the Medical University of South Carolina on April 21, 1973. He was 29 years old.